For immediate release: Jul 01, 2008
Posted by: [OUCC]
Contact: Anthony Swinger
Phone: (317) 233-2747

Boonville municipal water rate case: State utility consumer advocate accepting public comments

The Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor (OUCC) is inviting public comments as it reviews the City of Boonville's request for an increase in its municipal water utility's rates and charges.

The OUCC - the state agency representing consumer interests in cases before the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) - has not yet taken a position on the city's request but is currently scheduled to complete its review and file testimony in this case on Tuesday, July 22. Consumers who wish to provide written comments on the case in the meantime may submit them to the OUCC's consumer services staff via mail, e-mail or fax.

Water rates would increase in two phases under the city's pending proposal. The monthly bill for a residential customer using 5,000 gallons - including the city's fire protection surcharge - would rise from $26.89 to $40.33 during construction of planned improvements to the city's water system, and to $44.40 once the infrastructure improvements are complete. Boonville's current water rates were approved in January 2006. In addition, the city is seeking IURC authorization to issue up to $8.14 million in long-term debt.

The additional revenues and financing - according to the city's testimony - would pay for a number of infrastructure improvements and additions while also covering increases in operating and maintenance costs. Planned improvements include construction of a new water treatment plant, improvements to the city's existing water treatment plant (including filter replacements, building improvements and installation of a new control system), well field improvements (including new wells), improvements to the utility's distribution system, a water main extension for a new wholesale customer, and storage tank painting.

The OUCC needs to receive all written consumer comments in this case no later than Thursday, July 17. Comments should include the consumer's name, address, and a reference to "IURC Cause No. 43477," and can be submitted by mail, fax or the Internet:

Additional information on this case, including the utility's testimony, is available on the OUCC Website at www.in.gov/oucc/3405.htm. Consumers with questions about submitting written comments can contact the OUCC's consumer services staff toll-free at 1-888-441-2494.

For additional information on the regulatory process and other utility consumer topics - including tips for saving money on water and energy bills - please visit the OUCC Website or call the agency toll-free.

 

(IURC Cause No. 43477)

The Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor (OUCC) is the state agency that represents residential and business consumer interests in cases before state and federal utility regulatory commissions. To learn more, visit www.IN.gov/OUCC.

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